Open de Portugal Fantasy Preview

The European Tour makes their first stop on European soil this week (excluding wacky formats) but most of the Tour is sitting this one out.

The field is rather weak as Morgado Golf & Country Club plays the role of host for the first time on the European Tour. Most of the studs are over in America playing at TPC Sawgrass while others are waiting for some of the flagship events coming up.

Originally reported as a short, short layout, they are now set to play this week’s course around 7,419 yards which is on the longer side. However, when you look at the hole breakdown, you see six of the par 4s coming in under 410 yards. It looks like the tournament officials added a bunch of yardage to the par 5s, but overall this should still be an easy test for these pros.

Players to Watch

GouveiaGolfRicardo Gouveia … Pretty remarkable to see Ricky G as the favorite in a European Tour event. On raw stats alone, he’s one of the top 10 in the field, but then you add in local knowledge and it’s easy to see why he’s the man to beat this week.

Aaron Rai … Won on the Challenge Tour at the end of March. On the European Tour he’s been real steady, albeit in a very small sample. This is a perfect chance for the 22-year-old Englishman to breakout on the big tour.

Florian Fritsch … Too much time without a good result. I know that’s by choice given his travel restrictions, but I want to see him round into form here in Europe before I hop on board. In terms of talent he’s near the top of this field, but I will fade.

Robert Rock … There aren’t any true household names in the field this week, but Rock might be the closest thing. Fans in America love his hatless ways, so I expect his ownership to be inflated. As much as I would like to fade the heavy chalk, I don’t think it’s a great idea since he’s the class of the field this week.

Max Orrin … Across the Euro Tour and Challenge Tour, he’s posted top 35s in 10 of his last 11 starts. This is co-sanctioned by the Challenge Tour and basically boasts a Challenge Tour field.

Performance in Europe … We are seeing the first start on European soil for the year, so let’s see who has performed best in Europe since 2015:

Florian Fritsch
Robert Rock
Paul Lawrie
Ricardo Gouveia
Richard Green
David Drysdale
Eddie Pepperell
Robert Dinwiddie
Scott Henry
Jens Dantorp

My Top 25 for the 2017 Open de Portugal

1. Ricardo Gouveia
2. Trevor Fisher Jr.
3. Robert Rock
4. David Drysdale
5. Aaron Rai
6. Sebastian Soderberg
7. Christiaan Bezuidenhout
8. Tom Lewis
9. Oliver Fisher
10. Max Orrin
11. Nick Cullen
12. Justin Walters
13. Robert Dinwiddie
14. Zander Lombard
15. Thomas Linard
16. Eddie Pepperell
17. Matthew Nixon
18. Stuart Manley
19. Julien Guerrier
20. Anton Karlsson
21. Mark Foster
22. Jens Fahrbring
23. Joel Stalter
24. Pep Angles
25. Jaco Ahlers

This article has 2 comments

    • Haha really just rely on pure stats. Some grade out well due to steady mediocrity on the Euro Tour while others raise up because they’ve crushed in small samples.


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